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setxkbmap - set the keyboard using the X Keyboard Extension
setxkbmap [ args ] [ layout [ variant [ option ... ] ] ]
The setxkbmap command maps the keyboard to use the layout determined by the options speci-
fied on the command line.
An XKB keymap is constructed from a number of components which are compiled only as
needed. The source for all of the components can be found in /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/xkb.
-help Prints a message describing the valid input to setxkbmap.
Specifies the name of the compatibility map component used to construct a keyboard
Specifies the name of an XKB configuration file which describes the keyboard to be
Specifies the display to be updated with the new keyboard layout.
Specifies the name of the geometry component used to construct a keyboard layout.
Specifies the name of the keymap description used to construct a keyboard layout.
Specifies the name of the layout used to determine the components which make up
the keyboard description. Only one layout may be specified on the command line.
Specifies the name of the keyboard model used to determine the components which
make up the keyboard description. Only one model may be specified on the command
Specifies the name of an option to determine the components which make up the key-
board description; multiple options may be specified, one per -option flag. Note
that setxkbmap summarize options specified in the command line with options was
set before (saved in root window properties). If you want only specified options
will be set use the -option flag with an empty argument first.
-print With this option the setxkbmap just prints component names in a format acceptable
by an xkbcomp (an XKB keymap compiler) and exits. The option can be used for tests
instead of a verbose option and in case when one need to run both the setxkbmap
and the xkbcomp in chain (see below).
Specifies the name of the rules file used to resolve the request layout and model
to a set of component names.
Specifies the name of the symbols component used to construct a keyboard layout.
-synch Force synchronization for X requests.
Specifies the name of the types component used to construct a keyboard layout.
Specifies which variant of the keyboard layout should be used to determine the
components which make up the keyboard description. Only one variant may be speci-
fied on the command line.
USING WITH xkbcomp
If you have an Xserver and a client shell running on differnt computers and XKB configura-
tion files sets on those machines are different you can get problems specifying a keyboard
map by model, layout, options names. The thing is the setxkbcomp converts these names to
names of XKB configuration files according to files that are on the client side computer.
Then it sends the file names to the server where the xkbcomp has to compose a complete
keyboard map using files which the server has. Thus if the sets of files differ signifi-
cantly the names that the setxkbmap generates can be unacceptable on the server side. You
can solve this problem running the xkbcomp on the client side too. With the -print option
setxkbmap just prints the files names in an appropriate format to its stdout and this out-
put can be piped directly to the xkbcomp input. For example, a command
setxkbmap us -print | xkbcomp - $DISPLAY
makes both step on the same (client) machine and loads a keyboard map into the server.
X Version 11 Release 6.6 SETXKBMAP(1)
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